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Old 01-30-2014, 10:55 AM   #1
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Default Daily Feast - February

Gaga lu'nee
Bony or Hungry Month

The whole earth belongs to ASGA YA GALLUN LATI, the Great Spirit.

Cherokee People

February 1 - Daily Feast

This morning the sun spilled pale gold over the horizon and filled all the space beneath the great oaks. High above, the red-tail hawk, known to the Cherokees as at wo di, sailed lazily along air currents. Even though spring is still many weeks away, the land is beautiful to see. Now, while the trees are bare, there is a wider view of hills and valleys. The colors are all muted shades of beige and gray and the hills are swathed in blue mist. Even the deer are outfitted by nature to be the same subtle shade of browns and tans to give them protection. A restful moment is a perfect moment. But we have to be open to it, and receptive to anything that gives us peace of mind with no side effects. It can't happen if our minds are set to be drab and dreary.

~ The old Lakota was wise. He knew that man's heart away from nature becomes hard. ~


'A Cherokee Feast of Days', by Joyce Sequichie Hifler


Elder's Meditation of the Day - February 1

"You can't just sit down and talk about the truth. It doesn't work that way. You have to live it and be part of it and you might get to know it."

--Rolling Thunder, CHEROKEE

We all read books that have much information in them. Often we pick up on little sayings that we remember. Inside of us is the little owl, the owl of knowing. It talks to us-guiding us and nurturing us. Often when we get information, it's hard to live by, but it's easy to talk about. It's living the Red Road that counts-Walk the Talk. If we really want freedom in our lives, if we really want to be happy, if we really want to have peace of mind, it's the truth we must seek.

My Creator, help me in my search for the truth today.


By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

Have you heard how dreadful the neighbors are these days to ignore another's plight, and how the world has gone to the dogs because people don't care? Have you heard how hardened hearts are and how callous and unfeeling the human race has become?

It may be true such things do happen....for we hear about it daily. But it likely is that we hear more about the unusual then the usual.

For have you heard about the builder who laid his own plans aside to help another build his house....and the lady who gave her home and nursing care to someone who had no other place to go. Or the child who found its needs fulfilled in the love of a foster mother.

We may ignore, but we can never erase the love of the human race for the human race. The world may abound with sordid happenings; it may revel in senseless activities. But called to help, the greater number will respond without thought of the cost to themselves.

Of these things we hear so little. With these we come in contact every day and accept it as the normal pattern of life....which it is....for each unthinking, infantile mine there are two great thoughtful ones. And the second great Commandment still works its wonders in all our lives.

February 2 - Daily Feast
The drawback of having something go wrong is that we start believing we can't do anything right. It is the beginning of a habit that makes us stumble where we have always stumbled. A subtle and secret conditioning sets in to make us believe we will fail - even before we start. It makes us wilt at the first sign of opposition devastating us with criticism. It is then that we lose our grip and our good intentions - not just for the present time but for all time to come. The Cherokee learned long ago to say"We no longer fall down when something challenges us. We no longer see ourselves as victims. But we are strong and able to overcome the most severe critic and break every habit that has kept us bound."
~ Each day in the old times in summer and in winters we came down to the river to bathe. This strengthened and toughened our firm skin. ~
'A Cherokee Feast of Days' by Joyce Sequichie Hifler
Elder's Meditation of the Day - February 2
"Even the seasons form a great circle in their changing and always come back again to where they were. The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood and so it is everything where power moves."
--Black Elk (Hehaka Sapa) OGLALA SIOUX
In these modern times it is difficult to understand why we should think circles and seasons. People and society are always moving through distance over yonder going here and going there-hurry up grow up be successful climb the ladder of success etc. The Elders tell us to slow down to be patient pray and think circles. Circle thinking applies to relationships business and every area of our lives. We need to teach our awareness to look for seasons and cycles.
My Creator teach me the seasons of growth.
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

We are all aware of the emotional effect color creates. And for this reason we choose colors that please the eye by first pleasing the inner emotions. Certain colors have the same effect on many while other colors affect each of us individually and in particular ways.
Red has an exciting effect green is cool serenity. Orange is the color of vivacity and brown tones are restful earthy colors. People dress to enhance their appearances with certain colors. Homes are decorated and offices planned to create pleasant surroundings.
And we as individuals possess moods of many colors. Yet we are far more careless about the color of that mood letting the attitudes and colors of others dictate to us how we are to behave. If we could remember when we meet people whose moods are black to remind ourselves that their moods are their own there would be less involvement in the emotions of others.
We are so vividly aware of color we must not be reckless in recognizing the color scheme within our own personality. Whether it is a vibrant color sophisticated or bright and witty color always works its subtle magic.

February 3 - Daily Feast

These are no longer ordinary times, and many circumstances we thought would never change, are changing. The innocent times, the good natured humor of life has been covered over with suggestive jokes empty of meaning. The ground is shifting under our feet and we are having to learn to walk a new way. Few things are permanent. We are born of change, but we still have to keep a commonsense attitude or we can lose our footing. We need to prove, long before we accept something as fact, that it is true. If it is right, it can be proved. Much is a mystery to us. But to the Tsilagi - Cherokee - silence is golden. We speak little and listen long. Words are important in songs and in ceremonies - and in general conversation as well. It is wise to save words and use them only when they can be effective.

~ Good works do not last long until they amount to something. ~


'A Cherokee Feast of Days', by Joyce Sequichie Hifler


Elder's Meditation of the Day - February 3

"It's very hard to do things in the right manner, but as long as we do things right, we are in turn with the Great Spirit."

--Rolling Thunder, CHEROKEE

When we are right with the Great Spirit, we are right with all things. It is impossible to be out of harmony with anything or anybody when we are in harmony with the Great One. So, if during the day a problem crops up and someone makes us mad, the best thing we can do is talk to the Creator first, ask for His help, then continue our conversation with the other person. In this way, our emotional nature will keep aligned with our thoughts, and we will always stay right with the Great Spirit.

Great Spirit, I ask You to guide me on the Red Road today.


By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

If everyone were alike, what a dull world it would be. It is the individuality of each person that makes the world so interesting.

The tremendous differences in people give a wide range of personalities, beliefs, and appearances to very group, no matter how small.

If all the flowers in the world were of one color, would we think them so beautiful? It is the variety and wide range of rainbow colors that keeps us fascinated.

Cowper wrote, "Variety is the very spice of life, that gives it all its flavor." So many have no thought of life except what they will eat, what they will wear, and how they can entertain themselves. And then we come on someone who has the ability to see loveliness in the sunlight and charm in quiet rain. They can say things to encourage, or to make calm and peaceful.

We meet many different kinds of people. Some we love and some we like and love, which is a terrible difference. It is to find a wholeness or a part of our lost self in someone else. It isn't that they are so much like us or that we believe the way they do, but that they communicate, and it is this rare communication that respects the differences between peoples.


February 4 - Daily Feast

To stand alone does not mean there is no one else around. It means we are u na tse li dv-u na to tiv hi.... We think for ourselves in an independent way, using our heads rather than our feet. We fit life to us instead of letting it press us into a mold that would not makes us happy. Letting the world dictate to us is being one of the herd that runs - not because it is the right thing to do, but because we think everyone else is doing it, and so must we. Is it the right direction? Refusing to be swept along with every trend is cultivating our inner awareness of right and wrong. Awareness is there within us, but we have to hear it and heed it. This is why we were given intelligence - to stand alone so that we may have something to offer when someone else needs us.

~ Too many misinterpretations have been made....too many misunderstandings.... ~


'A Cherokee Feast of Days', by Joyce Sequichie Hifler


Elder's Meditation of the Day - February 4

"We say there is a right time and place for everything.It's easy to say, but hard to understand. You have to live it to understand it."

--Rolling Thunder, CHEROKEE

The Elders tell us there is a right time and a right place. Don't plant seeds in the fall-wrong time. One way we find out about the right time and right place is our experience. If we are lucky, we have a few friends who will share their experience; this will help us too. The best way is to let God guide us. Only He knows the right time and the right place. So we need to pray and ask Him for guidance.

Great Spirit, show me patience so I can live in the right time and right place.


By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

So often it is difficult to know where the line lies between kindness and domineering. It doesn't sound as if the two could possibly mix, but sometimes in our watchfulness over those we care about we're inclined to think it a kind of goodness when it actually becomes domineering.

It is often the best and kindest thing to let others think for themselves. Even though the helpfulness is of love, it can be smothering to the ones who want to breathe freely, even of their own problems.

Concern can turn to possessiveness in the space of a moment and do it so subtly it is almost impossible to comprehend. All individuals have the right to make their own mistakes and also the undeniable right to correct those mistakes. It makes help appreciated when it comes and then help is recognized as help and not as ownership.

If we were all told what to do, it would relieve us of the burden of the responsibility of thinking, planning, or making decisions. Our lives would be literally free of care. And there are those among us who love to direct the traffic of other people's lives. But have you noticed how detestable it is to them to have the smallest suggestion made concerning their own? What a display of vanity!

There are always sycophants, or "apple polishers," if you will, who fawn and flatter the vanity. But to have one's vanity built to great heights is not always an act of love, but more often subtle scorn.

Love is the only force against vanity. Love does not wish to command, but only to serve. If love cannot tell the truth it does not speak. Vanity separates, love joins. Love does not ask that another take the responsibility, but it asks only the strength to bear it.


February 5 - Daily Feast

If we could look ahead, we would be comforted to know that what we have worked for and what we have given our hearts to will reward us. We cannot give and give and not receive, especially if we have given willingly and cheerfully. Our lives are many-faceted. We have shared in many ways and many times when it seemed unimportant. We gave without thought that it would do anything but help - and these are the gifts that will not go unrewarded. Giving is so often thought of in terms of the things we give, but our greatest giving is of our time, and kindness, and even comfort for those who need it. We look on these gifts as unimportant - until we need them. Then, the most wonderful gift is simple courage.

~ I felt that I was leaving all that I had, but I did not cry. ~


'A Cherokee Feast of Days', by Joyce Sequichie Hifler


Elder's Meditation of the Day - February 5

"Let the person I serve express his thanks according to his own bringing up and his sense of humor."

--Charles A. Eastman (Ohiyesa), SANTEE SIOUX

"It is better to give than receive." But it doesn't really matter if we are giving or receiving. There is an identical feeling associated with both. We get this feeling every time we receive. We can't control when we receive gifts but we can control when we give gifts. Therefore, the more we give, the better we feel. When we are given gifts, or someone does something for us, it is the Indian way to honor this person.

Great Spirit, let me honor and be respectful to those who are good to me today.


By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

In every society there always seem to be people who feel it their duty to read the riot act to whomever, in their opinion, is in need of it at the moment. Come be my friend until I have time to let you know the things you're doing wrong. This is a committee of one, in all my busy days....taking time to straighten out all who are not conforming to my ideas.

Who, in all the world, has so much wisdom as to consider themselves so forever be capable of such certainty as to what another person should do. And even if they should be right, who commissioned them in all their wisdom to speak the words that have such power to wither a spirit.

When the world has so much hurt, why should one voice be raised against another who has not spoken an unkind word in its direction. When even the strongest is so in need of compassion and love, why is one voice, sharp edged and driven deep, allowed to speak.

Our words can build or destroy. And we never really know just when something we say may make a decision for someone else, to give them courage or further fear. But God help all who have not learned that the words we speak come back to us....many times.


February 6 - Daily Feast

Little things heal our hurt. Sounds, scents, the spoken word, and music that may mean nothing to someone else can reach into our souls and do a work that ordinary methods cannot touch. Simple remedies can heal the deepest ills - a love that springs from inner wells, the sounds of bird song and the laughter of children at play. Our work is to avoid the negative side - to think and speak only healing words, loving words. Choices are possible. Though we make many of them a day, we do it so unconsciously that we have not realized the effect - fretting about every little thing, letting the world steal our peace, and lying down when we should be up and doing. Choose to be well, to find contentment and to be a role model for those who watch. Listen for peace.

~ Listen! Or your tongue will make you deaf. ~


'A Cherokee Feast of Days', by Joyce Sequichie Hifler


Elder's Meditation of the Day - February 6

"We hold on to our otuhan, our give-aways, because they help us to remain Indians."

--Lame Deer, LAKOTA

Our traditional communities and villages function on interdependence. Share the deer and give freely of what you have to another. Another way to express this principle is, it's better to give than to receive. To share what you have eliminates complexity. The Elders say, live a simple life. One of the principles in the Unseen World is, the more you give, the more you get. You can become a channel for abundance for your family, tribe or community. A giving person sets up a flow or replacement. Whatever you share will be returned to you in an amount equal or greater. The Indian way is for everyone to give to another, thus the community wins.

Great Spirit, today, teach me the principle of giving. Let me be Your channel of abundance.


By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

So much has been written about happiness - the way to it, the reasons for it, the symbols of it - and still people search for that very special something that will assure happiness forever after. Of all the recipes for lasting happiness, we finally have to mix our own. But the one thing everyone has in common is the need for a little bit more. We have this and this, for which we are very thankful, but always the need is extended to that little bit more.

Happiness is like any other part of our lives, we must use wisdom in seeking it. We too often rush headlong into something that seems to be instant happiness, all the time telling ourselves we can right the wrong at a later time. But happiness doesn't remain happiness for very long when it has such strings attached.

In order to be rightly happy we concentrate on getting, but it is giving that we find most necessary to mix into every recipe. To some happiness will always be elusive, never quite settling anywhere, never quite revealing itself, for they have yet to learn that happiness has the wings of angels, the breath of God, and the love of man, all hidden within Him.


February 7 - Daily Feast

Always remember that certain circumstances are not ours to alter. We make the most of them and go on. We can only be examples, never controllers of other people's lives, other peoples children, other people's circumstances. Some would have us believe we contribute to harsh events by doing nothing. But some of the best work, some of the deepest caring and doing is not physically evident in the beginning. Help of any kind must be wanted and recognized before it can do any good. Too much help where it is not appreciated can make even a good person helpless. We have to be wise in our giving, and particularly wise in what we withhold, because it may be what we withhold helps the most.

~ We were contented to let things remain as the Great Spirit made them. ~


'A Cherokee Feast of Days', by Joyce Sequichie Hifler


Elder's Meditation of the Day - February 7

"I can tell you that understanding begins with love and respect. It begins with respect for the Great Spirit. All things - and I mean ALL things - have their own will and their own way and their own purpose; this is what is to be respected."

--Rolling Thunder, CHEROKEE

Everything on earth has a purpose and is designed special. No two things are created identical. Sometimes in our minds we have a picture of how things should be, and often what we see is different from what they really are. When this happens we often want to control how things are, making them act or behave according to our picture. We need to leave things alone. God is running all things. How do we do this? In out minds we tell ourselves to love all things and respect all things just as they are. Accept what we cannot change.

Great Spirit, teach me the value of respect and help me to accept people, places and things just as they are.


By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

You speak to me of faith and the church you attend. The most important faith will be the way you feel about it within you. Don't ever let anyone tell you that it is too unsophisticated to think about such things. For it is the very basis on which you draw your breath. Without faith there's no hope.

The most beautiful thing about life is that we can begin it anew each day. We need to forget every unpleasant thing that has ever happened to us, every shallow thing that has no meaning, every unkind word or deed or thought and start all over again.

And the only possible way to do it is by faith. Faith in yourself, faith in others, faith in God, and faith that right will win. And facetiously stated, "Them that has, gits." If you have a little faith, it will attract more - if you know about it within you.
"No matter what you have done up to this moment, you get 24 brand-new hours to spend every single day." --Brian Tracy
AA gives us an opportunity to recreate ourselves, with God's help, one day at a time. --Rufus K.
When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. --Franklin D. Roosevelt
We stay sober and clean together - one day at a time!
God says that each of us is worth loving.
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